St. Jacobs and area, Ontario – My Top 7 Picks

St. Jacobs and area, Ontario – My Top 7 Picks

St. Jacobs is located in southwest Ontario just north of Waterloo. It is a popular location for tourism due to its Mennonite heritage and retail focus. The Conestogo River, which powered the village’s original gristmill, runs through the village.

St. Jacobs was settled in 1819 and was first known as “Jakobstettel” which means “Jacob’s Village” or “James’s Village”. The St. was added to the name simply to make it sound more pleasing and the pluralization was in honor of the combined efforts of Jacob C. Snider and his son, Jacob C. Snider, Jr., founders of the village.

St. Jacobs’ developed as a thriving business community throughout the 1800s with such businesses as a felt factory, tannery, glue factory, flour mill, saw mill, and furniture factory. The village served the needs of surrounding pioneer farm settlements. Situated on Arthur Road, St. Jacobs boasted four hotels by 1852. One of these – Benjamin’s Restaurant and Inn – is still operating today.

St. Jacobs features dozens of artisans in historic buildings, such as the Country Mill, Village Silos, Mill Shed, and the Old Factory. Visitors may watch artisans make pottery, quilts, designer clothes, jewelry, glass vases, woven wall hangings, Tiffany lamps, stained glass doors, miniature doll houses, and more. There are also two blacksmith shops to visit. The Visitor Centre is a Mennonite interpretation center providing information and education on the Mennonite people in the community.

St. Clements, Heidelberg, Crosshill and Bamberg are communities in the Township of Wellesley.

Architectural Photos, St. Jacobs, Ontario
7 Cedar Street – Gothic Revival, verge board trim
Architectural Photos, St. Jacobs, Ontario
29 Spring Street – Gothic Revival – corner quoins
Architectural Photos, St. Jacobs, Ontario
20 Isabella Street – Edwardian, second floor balcony
Architectural Photos, St. Jacobs, Ontario
29 Albert Street – Queen Anne style
Architectural Photos, St. Clements, Ontario
Lobsinger Line, St. Clements – Italianate, hipped roof, pediment
Architectural Photos, Crosshill, Ontario
Crosshill – Gothic Revival, corner quoins
Architectural Photos, Bamberg, Ontario
Bamberg – stone house